Connect with us

Arts & Entertainment

Calendar for May 14



Friday, May 14

Bearded Ladies-Motley Bear Crüe one-year anniversary. See the Motley staff and your friends in campy bearded drag. $100 cash prize to the campiest bearded lady. The party is from 5 p.m.-3 a.m. Motley Bar is located above EFN Lounge at 1318 9th St., N.W.

Baby Got Back Latino Dance Party at Apex Nightclub, 1415 22nd St., N.W. Doors open at 9 p.m. with music from DJ Michael Brandon. 18 to enter and 21 to drink.

Honeysuckle Hype with Natalie E. Illum: A one-woman queer burlesque performance at Phase 1, 525 8th St. S.E., the performance begins at 8 p.m.

Saturday, May 15

Every Saturday at Phase 1, Pop Rocks from 9 p.m.-3 a.m. Music from DJ LS. Phase 1 is located at 525 8th St., S.E.

Burgundy Crescent volunteers today for the Lost Dog & Cat Rescue Foundation. To participate, visit

Celebrate EFN Lounge’s one-year anniversary with resident DJs Shea Van Horn & Matt Bailer with MIXTAPE. MIXTAPE is an alterna-gay-disco-electro-pop-indie dance party for queers, gays, lesbians, trans, queens, kings, boys, girls, birls, goys, whatever. $5 cover, 21+ to enter. EFN Lounge is located at 1318 9th St., N.W.

Join the Latino History Project at the DC Center, 1810 14th St., N.W., from 3-6 p.m. to celebrate the opening of their new office and learn about their mission and goals and how you can get involved in preserving LGBT Latino history in the District. The event will showcase the new office space, feature some LHP exhibits, include a short presentation on how you can volunteer for the project and provide light refreshments. For details visit

The 135th running of the Preakness Stakes, the second leg of the Triple Crown, is held at Baltimore’s Pimlico racetrack. Beer returns to the infield this year; $20 buys you all you can drink. O.A.R. and Zack Brown Band perform in the infield. Gates open at 10 a.m.; main race at 6 p.m. Infield tickets $40 at

BARE, dedicated to our men and women in blue at Cobalt, 1639 R St., N.W. In honor of National Police Week (May 8-15), The Ladies of LURe are showing their appreciation to the men and women in blue and raising money for two organizations. This month get ready for a jam packed evening to benefit Gays & Lesbians Opposing Violence and Concerns of Police Survivors. The event is for 21+, doors open at 10 p.m., $5 before midnight, $8 after (admission waived for police officers). GLOV and C.O.P.S. officials will be on-site.

DC Front Runners newcomers Fun Run/Walk. The DC Front Runners will be holding a Fun Run/Walk for newcomers on the National Mall starting at Union Station. Walkers meet at 9:30 a.m. and runners gather at 10 a.m. for a 3, 4 or 6-mile run. Meet up at the plaza directly in front of Union Station. Afterwards, grab a bite to eat and socialize.

Right Round, an ‘80s alt-pop dance party at the Black Cat, 1811 14th St., N.W., with DJ lil’e, $7.

Sunday, May 16

Ruby Slipper Drag Brunch from 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Tabaq Bistro’s Red Room, 1336 U St., N.W. Music by DJs Jason Horswill and DJ C-Dubz. Each will have a rotating cast of performers. The May 16 lineup is Destiny B. Childs, Regina Jozet Adams, and Ashlee Jozet Adams. Reservations via or call 202-265-0965.

“A Celebration of Life” tea dance event at Town Danceboutique, 2009 8th St., N.W., from 4-8 p.m. Part of the “POZ” event family, a weekly HIV+ Mixer for those living with HIV & those who are supportive. Music from a six-DJ lineup and sponsored in part by, HOPE DC, DC Young Poz Socials and the DC Center.

The Ushers Theatre Going Group will attend the musical VIOLET, at Kensington Arts Theatre in Kensington, Md. Tickets are $18. There will be a post-performance discussion with the cast moderated by the Ushers’ Joel Markowitz. Dinner follows the discussion. For more information, and to reserve your tickets, call Joel at 703-447-8805 or visit http:/

Monday, May 17

Burgundy Crescent kicks up its heels at Remingtons. To participate, visit

Tuesday, May 18

The DC Center and the Capital Area Vaccine Effort invite you to a presentation on the basics of HIV Vaccine Research. This free lunch presentation takes place on HIV Vaccine Awareness Day, May 18 at 12:30 p.m. at the DC Center, 1810 14th St., N.W. Learn about a new HIV vaccine study that is recruiting gay and bisexual men and transgender women.

She Scenes Ladies Night with music from DJ K-oz at EFN Lounge, 1318 9th St., N.W.

Bet Mishpachah: Shavuot Services from 7-10:30 p.m. at the Washington, D.C., Jewish Community Center, 1529 16th St., N.W. An observance of the Jewish holiday of Shavuot. The evening will start with a dairy/vegetarian potluck dinner. E-mail [email protected] for details. There will be an evening festival service followed by a study session on a topic to be announced.

Wednesday, May 19

The Tom Davaron Social Bridge Club will meet at 7:30 p.m., at the Dignity Center, 721 8th St., S.E. (across from Marine Barracks) for Social Bridge. No partner needed. Visit; click “Social Bridge in Washington, D.C.”

Thursday, May 20

Hunks in Trunks swimsuit fashion show to benefit Equality Maryland featuring gay model Ronnie Kroell, 7:30 p.m. at Red Maple, 930 N. Charles St., Baltimore. Tickets $22 at

Stonewall Democrats Capital Champions awards reception, Gompers Room, AFL-CIO, 815 16th St., N.W., 6-8 p.m. Frank Kameny and Rep. Tammy Baldwin are among the honorees. General admission tickets $125 at

The DC Center and the Capital Area Vaccine Effort host an HIV Vaccine Awareness Day outreach night. Meet at the DC Center, 1810 14th St., N.W., at 7 p.m. for pizza and a brief presentation on HIV vaccine research. We will then go out into the community to conduct HIV Vaccine Awareness Day outreach at LGBT bars and clubs, finishing up at Town Danceboutique. RSVP to [email protected]

Friday, May 21

The 4th annual Washington Blade summer kickoff party in Rehoboth! Join us to celebrate the arrival of beach season at Blue Moon, 35 Baltimore Ave., Rehoboth Beach, DE, 6-8 p.m.

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


‘Hadestown’ comes to the Kennedy Center

Levi Kreis discusses return to live theater



Levi Kreis is an out actor who plays Hermes in the national tour of ‘Hadestown’ soon opening at the Kennedy Center. (Photo courtesy of Levi Kreis)

Through Oct. 31
The Kennedy Center
$45.00 – $175.00
For Covid-19 safety regulations go to

Early in September at New York’s Walter Kerr Theatre, out singer/actor Levi Kreis was in the audience for the long-awaited Broadway reopening of “Hadestown,” Anaïs Mitchell’s rousing musical reimagining of the Orpheus myth in which the legendary Greek hero descends into the underworld to rescue his lover Eurydice. 

After almost 18 months of pandemic-induced closure, the Tony Award-winning folk opera was back and the house was full. In a recent phone interview, Kreis describes the evening as “love-filled, and electrifying and emotional after such a difficult time.” Now, Kreis is onstage in the national tour of “Hadestown,” currently launching at the Kennedy Center. As Hermes, the shape-shifting god of oratory, Kreis is both narrator and chaperone to the story’s young lovers. 

A Tennessee native, Kreis, 39, has triumphantly survived turbulent times including a harrowingly prolonged coming out experience that included six years of conversion therapy, education disruptions, and music contract losses. He officially came out through his acclaimed album “One of the Ones” (2006), which features a collection of piano vocals about past boyfriends. And four years later, he splendidly won a Tony Award for originating the role of rock and roll wild man Jerry Lee Lewis in the rockabilly musical “Million Dollar Quartet.” 

Throughout much of the pandemic, Kreis leaned into his own music and found ways to reconnect with his largely gay fan base. But he’s happy to now be touring, noting that all the “Hadestown” cast have been hungering to perform before a real live audience.

When not on the road, he’s based in New York City with his husband, classical-crossover recording artist Jason Antone. 

WASHINGTON BLADE: Hermes is the same role for which André De Shields—the brilliant African American actor, also gay, and some decades your elder won a Tony and has resumed playing on Broadway, right?

LEVI KREIS: That’s right. It’s really a testament to the creative team. Rather than laying us over what Broadway created. They’re creating a tour that’s uniquely different; still true to the beauty of the story but with a different flavor. 

BLADE: What attracted you to the part?

KREIS: First, I fell in love with the show. My own musical sensibilities understand the origins of where this music comes from. It’s very bluesy and gospel. Southern and rootsy. And that’s everything I’ve created in my career as a singer/songwriter.

BLADE: With your life experience, do you feel called to mentor?

KREIS: The biggest effort I’ve given to this narrative is being a pioneer of the out-music movement starting in 2005 which was a moment when gay artists were not signed to major labels. I want through eight major labels—when they found out I was gay things always went south. 

It’s been amazing to be a voice in LGBTQ media when no one was speaking about these things. It’s popular now, but back when it mattered it was a lot harder to start my career as an openly gay artist and speak about these issues rather than keep quiet, cash in, and only then come out. 

BLADE: Where did that nerve come from?

KREIS: Less about nerve and more about being beaten down. How many things have to happen before you give up and decide to be honest?  

BLADE: For many theatergoers, “Hadestown” will be their return to live theater. Other than it being visionary and remarkably entertaining, why would you recommend it? 

KREIS: We need encouragement right now. But we also need art that facilitates a lot of important conversation about what’s happening in the world. This has both elements.  

“Hadestown” is not a piece of art that you easily forget. You’re going to walk out of the theater with a story that sticks with you. You’ll realized that your own voice matters. There’s a part in the show, Orpheus’ song, when the gods encourage him to get the balance of the world back again by telling him that his voice matters. 

BLADE: Is it timely?

KREIS: Art is here to change the world. And this piece of art hits the nail right on the head. I’m a purist when it comes to art and song. There’s a reason why we do it. people are listening now in a way they haven’t listened before. To miss that is to miss the role of society, I think. 

BLADE: And going forward? 

KREIS: It’s going to be interesting. We could double down on super commercialized theater or we may decide to really go the other direction and reclaim innovation. That remains to be seen. 

Continue Reading


Book details fight to repeal ‘Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’

Clinton-era policy was horrific for LGB servicemembers



‘Mission Possible: The Story of Repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell’
By C. Dixon Osburn
c.2021, self-published $35 hardcover, paperback $25, Kindle $12.99 / 450 pages

When Senior Airman Brandi Grijalva was stationed at Tyndall Air Force Base, she talked with a chaplain’s assistant about some problems she had at home. The chaplain’s assistant said what she told him would be confidential. But when she revealed that she was a lesbian, the chaplain’s assistant no longer kept her conversation with him confidential. Grijalva, after being investigated was discharged.

Craig Haack was a corporal in the Marines serving in Okinawa, Japan. Haack, who had made it through boot camp, felt confident. Until investigators barged into his barracks. Looking for evidence “of homosexual conduct,” they ransacked everything from his computers to his platform shoes. Haack was too stunned to respond when asked if he was gay.

In 1996, Lt. Col. Steve Loomis’ house was burned down by an Army private. The Army discharged the private who torched Loomis’ house. You’d think the Army would have supported Loomis. But you’d be wrong. The army discharged Loomis for conduct unbecoming an officer because a fire marshal found a homemade sex tape in the ashes.

These are just a few of the enraging, poignant, at times absurd (platform shoes?), all-too-true stories told in “Mission Possible: The Story of Repealing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” by C. Dixon Osburn.

As a rule, I don’t review self-published books. But “Mission Possible” is the stunning exception that proves that rules, on occasion, are made to be broken.

“Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” (DADT) was the official U.S. policy on gay, lesbian and bisexual people serving in the military. Former President Bill Clinton announced the policy on July 19, 1993. It took effect on Feb. 28, 1994.

Sexual orientation was covered by DADT. Gender identity was covered by separate Department of Defense regulations.

Congress voted to repeal DADT in December 2010 (the House on Dec. 15, 2010, and the Senate on Dec. 18, 2010). On Dec. 22, 2010, Former President Barack Obama signed the repeal into law. 

DADT banned gay, lesbian and bisexual people who were out from serving in the U.S. military. Under DADT, it was not permitted to ask if servicemembers were LGB. But, LGB servicemembers couldn’t be out. They couldn’t talk about their partners, carry photos of their girlfriends or boyfriends or list their same-sex partner as their emergency contract.

It took nearly a year for the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” to go into effect. On Sept. 20, 2011, Obama, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates and Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff “certified to Congress that implementing repeal of the policy {DADT} would have no effect on military readiness, military effectiveness, unit cohesion or recruiting and retention,” Osburn writes.

Before DADT, out LGBT people weren’t permitted to serve in the military. “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was intended to be a compromise—a policy that would be less onerous on LGB people, but that would pass muster with people who believed that gay servicemembers would destroy military readiness, morale and unit cohesion.

Like many in the queer community, I knew that DADT was a horror-show from the get-go. Over the 17 years that DADT was in effect, an estimated 14,000 LGB servicemembers were discharged because of their sexual orientation, according to the Veterans Administration.

But, I had no idea how horrific “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” was until I read “Mission Possible.”              

In “Mission Possible,” Osburn, who with Michelle Benecke, co-founded the Servicemembers Legal Defense Network (SLDN), pulls off a nearly impossible hat trick.

In a clear, vivid, often spellbinding narrative, Osburn tells the complex history of the DADT-repeal effort as well as the stories of servicemembers who were pelted with gay slurs, assaulted and murdered under DADT.

Hats off to SLDN, now known as the Modern Military Association of America, for its heroic work to repeal DADT! (Other LGBTQ+ organizations worked on the repeal effort, but SLDN did the lion’s share of the work.)

You wouldn’t think a 450-pager about repealing a policy would keep you up all night reading. But, “Mission Possible” will keep you wide-awake. You won’t need the espresso.

Continue Reading

Arts & Entertainment

NSYNC star Lance Bass & husband Michael Turchin welcome twins

Singer, husband, and popular West Hollywood nightclub owner, now adds the job of ‘Dad’ to his resume



Lance Bass and Michael Turchin via Instagram

WEST HOLLYWOOD – Former boy-band NSYNC star and co-owner of the popular LGBTQ+ nightspot Rocco’s, Lance Bass, announced that he and husband Michael Turchin are the proud parents of twins, Violet Betty and Alexander James.

In his announcement on Instagram, Bass wrote; ‘The baby dragons have arrived!! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ I can not express how much love I feel right now. Thank you for all the kind wishes. It meant a lot. Now, how do you change a diaper??! Ahhhhhhhh!”

The babies were carried via surrogate, the singer noted saying that Alexander, born one minute before his sister on Wednesday, weighed 4 lbs., 14 oz. Violet weighed 4 lbs., 11 oz. Bass said in his Instagram post.

His husband also announced the news on his Instagram account. “Introducing the newest members of the Turchin-Bass household: Violet Betty and Alexander James!!!! They’re pure perfection and yes that includes the dozens of poops we’ve already dealt with. Our hearts our full!!! Thank you everyone for the well wishes 🥰🥰🥰”

Continue Reading

Follow Us @washblade

Sign Up for Blade eBlasts